Bicycles are common on the streets of cities and rural communities throughout Indiana. Bicycling can be safe when drivers operate their vehicles responsibly on the road. But a single act of negligence can result in a collision that can leave a bicyclist seriously hurt.
The Indiana bicycle accident attorneys at Vaughan & Vaughan can work to hold negligent drivers responsible after a car crash. You deserve to have your rights protected, and you can pursue compensation for your medical bills, time off work, and other losses.
Bike accidents can be extremely serious. You shouldn’t be left with the bills and financial stress when somebody else’s carelessness has harmed you. Our personal injury attorneys can protect your interests and work to maximize your compensation.
We Understand the Complex Nature of Bicycle Crash Claims
Bicycle accidents are often caused by drunk drivers, distracted drivers, reckless drivers, or motorists who ignore traffic signals and violate traffic laws. But proving that a driver was negligent can be difficult. Our bike accident lawyers know what it takes to hold negligent drivers accountable.
There are many different types of accidents that can leave bicyclists injured. They include:
- Dooring accidents: A bicyclist is traveling down the road past parked cars when the driver of one car swings the door open directly into the bicycle’s path. It’s also referred to as “getting doored.”
- Left hook crashes: This happens when the driver of a car or other vehicle takes a left turn at an intersection without checking for oncoming bicyclists first.
- Right hook crashes: In this type of accident, the driver of a car passes a bicycle, then makes a sudden right turn, leaving the bicyclist unable to stop in time to prevent a crash.
- Sideswipe accidents: A car veers into a bike lane or too close to the road, hitting a bicyclist with the side of the vehicle.
- Forced off the road: A car that gets too close to a bicyclist can force a bicyclist off the road and onto the pavement or sometimes down an embankment.
Drivers often deny responsibility for the accident. And in some cases, the accident may be a hit-and-run, leaving the driver unidentified. Insurance companies are always looking for ways to limit the compensation they pay and may question the extent of your injuries.
They may even try to blame you for causing the accident. That’s why you need an experienced attorney on your side who knows the issues that often come up with bicycle accidents. A bicycle accident attorney in Indiana can fight insurance company tactics that threaten your financial recovery.
How a Lawyer Can Help You With Your Claim
The legal process following a bicycle accident can be difficult and time-consuming. Bicycle accident victims may not be able to devote the time and energy needed to prove legal liability without access to resources and legal counsel. This is where an Indiana bicycle accident lawyer can be of use.
A personal injury lawyer will use their resources and expertise to investigate the claim, find all evidence that can prove liability, and negotiate with all parties involved in an effort to secure a fair settlement on their client’s behalf. Your lawyer will offer crucial guidance on how to move forward with the case.
When you have a skilled lawyer on your side, you can rest easy knowing that everything will be taken care of in the best possible manner. We get the facts to build the strongest possible case – one the insurance company can’t ignore.
Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims In Indiana
Bicycle accident claims in Indiana must be filed within two years after the incident, according to Indiana Code section 34-11-2-4. This means that the victim of an accident has only two years from the date of the incident in which the accident occurred to file a claim for compensation for financial losses.
If the responsible party can not be found in a reasonable amount of time or if the victim suffered fatal injuries, the deadline for filing a lawsuit could be extended. Accident injury victims may be eligible to seek compensation for their losses, including medical bills, lost wages, and property damage.
However, if the person was killed, their family may be eligible to file a wrongful death suit to seek compensation for their loss. A two-year window beginning on the date of the victim’s death would apply here.
Compensation for Your Bike Accident
A bicycle accident lawyer in Indiana will work to maximize the compensation you recover for your injuries and losses. One of the first things we determine is the true amount of damages you have suffered. A lawyer will calculate your damages accurately and compare your claim to previously resolved claims to arrive at the amount.
The damages often recovered in a bike crash claim can include:
- All medical expenses related to your injuries – both now and for future care
- Lost wages you suffered because you couldn’t work
- Loss of earning capacity should you become disabled
- Non-economic damages including pain and suffering, disability, and loss of enjoyment of life.
- Property damage to repair or replace your bike, cycling gear, or any other personal property damaged in the collision
Determining an accurate accounting of your losses is important. In the aftermath of an accident, financial pressure can be daunting. It’s best to know the complete amount of your damages so that you don’t accept an undervalued or lowball settlement offer.
Injuries in Bicycle Accident Claims
Bicyclists hit by a car often suffer serious injuries because they have very little protection. Even if they are not struck directly by a motor vehicle, they can be thrown from their bike onto the ground. Even less serious cycling injuries can require months of recovery and extensive medical treatment.
The most common bicycle accident injuries we claim include:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Traumatic Brain Injuries, concussions, head injuries
- Road rash, burns, and scarring
- Internal bleeding and organ damage
- Spinal cord injuries
- Injuries to the hands and wrists
There are generally several injuries involved in a bicycle crash, and the limits of an insurance policy can be exceeded before you ever leave the hospital. These medical expenses can become overwhelming, especially if you are unable to work.
Establishing liability and recovering financial compensation should be simple when a car crashes into a bicycle. But it doesn’t always work that way. An Indiana bicycle accident lawyer can help to make the legal process and your financial recovery easier.
Contact a Bicycle Accident Law Firm in Indiana to Find Out More
Insurance companies know us. They know we have a reputation for getting results. Many times, they are willing to sit down to work out a settlement. But if they won’t agree to a settlement that meets your needs and addresses your severe injuries, that’s not good enough.
We have been helping the injured in Indiana since 1913. And our goal remains the same – to get the best possible outcome for our clients, whether through a negotiated settlement or jury verdict. We have won many significant awards for clients in court. We are ready to fight for you.
Contact the legal team at Vaughan and Vaughan today to protect your rights. Talk to an experienced bicycle accident attorney and learn more about how we can help during a free consultation.